Conte Cabinet

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Conte Cabinet
Flag of Italy.svg
65th cabinet of Italy
Giuseppe Conte Official.jpg
Date formed1 June 2018; 6 months ago (2018-06-01)
People and organisations
Head of stateSergio Mattarella
Head of governmentGiuseppe Conte
Deputy head of governmentLuigi Di Maio
Matteo Salvini
No. of ministers19
Total no. of ministers19
Member partiesFive Star Movement (8)
League (5)
Independents (6)
Status in legislatureCoalition government
Opposition partiesDemocratic Party
Forza Italia
Brothers of Italy
Free and Equal
More Europe
History
Election(s)2018 election
Legislature term(s)XVIII Legislature (2018–2023)
Incoming formation2018 government formation
PredecessorGentiloni Cabinet

The Conte Cabinet, led by Giuseppe Conte, is the 65th cabinet of the Italian Republic.[1]

Formed by the Five Star Movement, the League and some independents proposed by each party, the cabinet is also referred to as "government of change" (Italian: governo del cambiamento) after the political agreement signed by the two parties,[2][3] "populist government" (the first of that kind in Europe according to several sources)[which?][4][5] or "yellow-green government" (governo gialloverde) based on their customary colours,[6] while the League calls it "yellow-blue government" (governo gialloblù), due to the League's official campaign colour.[7] The government, and more specifically the League, have been described by Italian newspapers[which?] as "souverainist".[8][9][10][11]

Supporting parties[edit]

The government is supported and most of its members are provided by the two following parties.

Party Position Main ideology Leader
Five Star Movement (M5S) Big tent Populism, Direct democracy Luigi Di Maio
League (L) Right-wing Populism, Federalism Matteo Salvini

At its birth, the government was also supported by the Associative Movement Italians Abroad (MAIE), five deputies and two senators previously expelled from the M5S, one dissident senator from the South American Union Italian Emigrants (USEI)[12] who later joined the MAIE and one deputy of Forza Italia (FI) who sarcastically voted in favour of it.[13] Ricardo Merlo, the leader of MAIE, was also named Undersecretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 12 June 2018. The government is also supported by the National Movement for Sovereignity, the Sardinian Action Party and the Italian Liberal Party (whose senators sit in the League group).

Brothers of Italy (FdI),[14] the parties representing liguistic minorities (Valdostan Union, South Tyrolean People's Party and Trentino Tyrolean Autonomist Party) and one deputy from USEI announced that they were willing to vote for measures that reflect their respective ideologies.[15]

Background and formation[edit]

The March 2018 general election resulted in a hung parliament,[16] with the Five Star Movement (M5S) led by Luigi Di Maio as the party with the largest number of votes and of parliamentary seats while the centre-right alliance in which Matteo Salvini's League emerged as the main political force won a plurality of seats in the Chamber of Deputies and in the Senate. The centre-left coalition, built around the Democratic Party (PD) led by former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, came third.[17]

On 9 May, after weeks of political deadlock and the failure of various attempts of forming a cabinet, including M5S–Centre-right and M5S–PD, Di Maio and Salvini officially requested President Sergio Mattarella to give them 24 more hours to strike a government agreement between their two parties.[18] In the evening, Silvio Berlusconi publicly announced that Forza Italia would not support a M5S–League government on a vote of confidence, but it would still maintain the centre-right alliance nonetheless, thus opening the doors to a possible majority government between the two parties.[19]

On 13 May, the M5S and the League reached an agreement in principle on a government program, but they could not find an agreement regarding the Prime Minister and the ministers. M5S and League leaders met with President Mattarella on 14 May and asked for an additional week of negotiations.[20] Both parties announced they would ask their respective members to vote on the government agreement by the weekend.[21][22]

On 21 May, private law professor and M5S advisor Giuseppe Conte was proposed by Di Maio and Salvini for Prime Minister.[23][24][25] Despite reports in the media suggesting that President Mattarella had significant reservations about the direction of the new government,[26] Conte was invited at the Quirinal Palace to receive the presidential mandate to form a new cabinet on May 23.[27][28] In his statement after the appointment, Conte said that he would be the "defender of Italian people".[29] The next day, Conte held talks with all the parliamentary parties, but the government formation was soon stuck on Paolo Savona as Minister of Economy and Finances, unfavoured by President Mattarella,[30] considering his alleged support for Italy's covert exit from the Euro as an overwhelming risk for the country's economy. On 27 May, President Mattarella refused to appoint Savona and Conte renounced his task after days of negotiation and an ultimatum by the two party leaders on Savona.[31][32][33]

The government at the Quirinal Palace for the oath

On 28 May, President Mattarella summoned Carlo Cottarelli (a former director of the International Monetary Fund) on 28 May and gave him the task to form a new government.[34][35] On the same day, the PD announced that it would abstain from voting the confidence to Cottarelli while the M5S, the League, FI and the Brothers of Italy (FdI) would vote against.[36][37] Cottarelli was expected to submit his list of ministers for approval to President Mattarella on 29 May. However, he held only informal consultations with the President on 29 May and 30 May, waiting for the formation of a "political government".[38][39] Meanwhile, Di Maio and Salvini announced their willingness to restart negotiations to form a "political" government and Giorgia Meloni (FdI leader) gave her support.[38][39][40]

On 31 May, the M5S and the League announced their new agreement on a Conte-led government with Giovanni Tria as Minister of Economy and Finances and Savona as Minister of European Affairs.[41][42] Subsequently, President Mattarella summoned Conte, who announced the list of ministers.[43][44] On 1 June, Prime Minister Conte and his ministers took their oaths of office and were sworn in.[45] On June 5, the Italian Senate approved the new government in a vote of confidence.[46] On June 6, the government was confirmed following a second vote of confidence, this time in the Chamber of Deputies.[47]

On 12 June, the cabinet appointed 6 deputy ministers and 39 undersecretaries.[48][49][50][51] Of all these appointments, 25 were M5S members, 17 Leghisti, two non-party independents and one member of the Associative Movement Italians Abroad.[52] The M5S received four deputy ministers while the League received two.[53]

Investiture votes[edit]

On 5 June 2018, the Conte Cabinet was granted the confidence of the Senate by receiving 171 votes in favor and 117 votes against (25 senators abstained; 7 senators did not vote, among which 6 were absent).[54] Senators for life Elena Cattaneo, Mario Monti and Liliana Segre abstained while senators for life Carlo Rubbia, Renzo Piano and Giorgio Napolitano did not vote. On 6 June 2018, the so-called Government of Change received the confidence of the Chamber of Deputies by receiving 350 votes in favor and 236 votes against (35 deputies abstained; 8 deputies did not vote, among which 5 were absent).[55]

5–6 June 2018
Investiture votes for Conte Cabinet
House of Parliament Vote Parties Votes
Senate of the Republic ☑Y Yes M5S (109), League (58), MAIE (2), Independents (2)
171 / 313
‹See TfM›☒N No FI (57), PD (52), LeU (4), AUT. (2), PSI (1), +E (1)
117 / 313
Abstension FdI (18), AUT. (5), Independents (2)
25 / 313
Chamber of Deputies ☑Y Yes M5S (220), League (123), MAIE (6), FI (1)
350 / 621
‹See TfM›☒N No PD (111), FI (104), LeU (14), CPAPPSIAC (4), NcI (3), +ECD (3)
236 / 621
Abstension FdI (30), SVP-PATT (4), USEI (1)
35 / 621

Party breakdown[edit]

Ministers[edit]

8
5
6

Ministers and other members[edit]

Geographical breakdown[edit]

A choropleth map showing how many ministers are from each region.

Composition[edit]

Overview[edit]

Office Name Party Term
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte Independent[a] 2018–present
Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio Five Star Movement 2018–present
Matteo Salvini League 2018–present
Minister of the Interior Matteo Salvini League 2018–present
Minister of Foreign Affairs Enzo Moavero Milanesi[b] Independent[a] 2018–present
Minister of Economy and Finances Giovanni Tria[c] Independent[d] 2018–present
Minister of Defence Elisabetta Trenta Five Star Movement 2018–present
Minister of Justice Alfonso Bonafede Five Star Movement 2018–present
Minister of Economic Development, Labour and Social Policies Luigi Di Maio Five Star Movement 2018–present
Minister of Infrastructures and Transports Danilo Toninelli[e] Five Star Movement 2018–present
Minister of Agriculture and Tourism Gian Marco Centinaio League 2018–present
Minister of Education Marco Bussetti Independent[d] 2018–present
Minister of Health Giulia Grillo Five Star Movement 2018–present
Minister of Culture Alberto Bonisoli Five Star Movement 2018–present
Minister of the Environment Sergio Costa Independent[a] 2018–present
Minister of European Affairs Paolo Savona Independent[d] 2018–present
Minister of Regional Affairs and Autonomies Erika Stefani League 2018–present
Minister for Parliamentary Relations and Direct Democracy Riccardo Fraccaro Five Star Movement 2018–present
Minister of Public Administration Giulia Bongiorno League 2018–present
Minister for Southern Italy Barbara Lezzi Five Star Movement 2018–present
Minister for Family and Disability Lorenzo Fontana League 2018–present
Secretary of the Council of Ministers Giancarlo Giorgetti League 2018–present
  1. ^ a b c Proposed by the Five Star Movement.
  2. ^ Replacing in the second selection the original candidate, Luca Giansanti (independent).
  3. ^ Chosen after the original candidate, Paolo Savona, was rejected by the President.
  4. ^ a b c Proposed by the League.
  5. ^ Replacing in the second selection the original candidate, Mauro Coltorti (M5S).

Detailed composition[edit]

Prime Minister[edit]

Portrait Office Name Term Party
Giuseppe Conte Official (cropped).jpg
Prime Minister
Giuseppe Conte
1 June 2018 – present
Independent

Deputy Prime Ministers[edit]

Portrait Office Name Term Party
MatteoSalvini2018 (cropped).jpg
Deputy Prime Minister
Matteo Salvini
1 June 2018 – present
League
Luigi Di Maio 2018.jpg
Deputy Prime Minister
Luigi Di Maio
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement

Ministers[edit]

Portrait Office Name Term Party
MatteoSalvini2018 (cropped).jpg
Minister of the Interior
Matteo Salvini
1 June 2018 – present
League
Enzo Moavero Milanesi 2018.jpg
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Enzo Moavero Milanesi
1 June 2018 – present
Independent
Giovanni Tria crop.jpg
Minister of Economy and Finances
Giovanni Tria
1 June 2018 – present
Independent
ElisabettaTrenta (cropped).jpg
Minister of Defence
Elisabetta Trenta
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Alfonso Bonafede daticamera 2018.jpg
Minister of Justice
Alfonso Bonafede
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Luigi Di Maio 2018.jpg
Minister of Economic Development,
Labour and Social Policies
Luigi Di Maio
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Danilo Toninelli datisenato 2018 (cropped).jpg
Minister of Infrastructures and Transports
Danilo Toninelli
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
GianMarcoCentinaio (cropped).jpg
Minister of Agriculture and Tourism
Gian Marco Centinaio
1 June 2018 – present
League
Ministro Bussetti .jpg
Minister of Education, University and Research
Marco Bussetti
1 June 2018 – present
Independent
Giulia Grillo.jpg
Minister of Health
Giulia Grillo
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Sergio Costa crop.jpg
Minister of the Environment
Sergio Costa
1 June 2018 – present
Independent
Alberto Bonisoli crop.jpg
Minister of Culture
Alberto Bonisoli
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Paolo Savona.jpg
Minister of European Affairs
Paolo Savona
1 June 2018 – present
Independent
Erika Stefani (cropped).jpg
Minister of Regional Affairs and Autonomies
Erika Stefani
1 June 2018 – present
League
Riccardo Fraccaro 2018.jpg
Minister for Parliamentary Relations and
Direct Democracy
Riccardo Fraccaro
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
GiuliaBongiorno (cropped).jpg
Minister of Public Administration
Giulia Bongiorno
1 June 2018 – present
League
Barbara Lezzi (cropped).jpg
Minister for Southern Italy
Barbara Lezzi
1 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Lorenzo Fontana daticamera.jpg
Minister for Family and Disability
Lorenzo Fontana
1 June 2018 – present
League

Secretary of the Council[edit]

Portrait Office Name Term Party
Giancarlo Giorgetti 2018.jpg
Secretary of the Council of Ministers
Giancarlo Giorgetti
1 June 2018 – present
League

Deputy Ministers[edit]

Portrait Office Name Term Party
Emanuela C. Del Re.jpg
Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs
Emanuela Del Re
13 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
ManlioNew.jpg
Manlio Di Stefano
13 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Laura Castelli 2018.jpg
Deputy Minister of Economy and Finances
Laura Castelli
13 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Massimo Garavaglia daticamera 2018.jpg
Massimo Garavaglia
13 June 2018 – present
League
Andrea Cioffi 2018.jpg
Deputy Minister of Economic Development
Andrea Cioffi
13 June 2018 – present
Five Star Movement
Dario Galli 2018.jpg
Dario Galli
13 June 2018 – present
League
Edoardo Rixi 2018.jpg
Deputy Minister of Infrastructures and Transports
Edoardo Rixi
13 June 2018 – present
League

Electoral program[edit]

The two parties signed a contract on a shared program on various measures.[56] During his speech before the investiture vote in the Italian Senate on 5 June, Conte announced his willingness to reduce illegal immigration and increase the contrast to human traffickers and smugglers. He also advocated a fight against political corruption, the introduction of a law which regulates the conflict of interests, a new bill which expands the right of self-defense, a taxes reduction and a drastic cut to politics's costs, thanks to the annuities' abolition.[57][58][59] Conte also proposed to lift off the international sanctions against Russia.[60]

Immigration[edit]

The coalition's immigration policy was led by Interior Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini, a strong opponent of illegal immigration.[61] Salvini laid out a three-point program to contrast illegal immigration, including increasing the number of repatriation centers, reducing immigration and increasing deportations of those who don't qualify for asylum.[62] The policy document calls for the deportation of Italy's estimated 500,000 undocumented immigrants "as a priority".[63]

On 10 June 2018, Salvini announced the closure of Italian ports, stating: "Everyone in Europe is doing their own business, now Italy is also raising its head. Let's stop the business of illegal immigration".[64] The following day, the Aquarius and SOS Méditerranée were turned away by Italy and Malta.[65] On the following day, Spain accepted the passengers of the Aquarius.[66]

On 18 June 2018, Salvini announced the government would conduct a census of Romani people in Italy for the purpose of deporting all who are not in the country legally.[67][68][69] However, this measure was criticized as unconstitutional and was opposed by all the oppositions and also by some members of the M5S.[70]

Taxes[edit]

The Government of Change pledged to reform the Italian tax system by introducing flat taxes for businesses and individuals, with a no-tax area for low-income households and corrections to keep some degree of tax progression (as required by the Constitution).

Politicians salaries and pensions[edit]

The parties intend to cut the pensions and annuities of parliamentarians, regional councillors and those employed by constitutional bodies. All monthly pensions exceding by 5,000 euros the amount contributed while working will be reviewed.[71]

Direct democracy[edit]

The coalition has pledged to use direct democracy via referendum. Riccardo Fraccaro, a M5S long time advocate of such votes, became the world's first Minister for Direct Democracy, advocating a lowering of the 50% participation quorum for referendum to be valid and the introduction of citizens' initiatives for new laws.[72]

Public health[edit]

The parties have pledged to reform the public health system to minimize inefficiencies and wastefulness of resources. The contract features the digitalization of the public health system, enhanced transparency, improved governance in the pharmaceutical sector, centralization of purchases, fight against corruption, new procedures for the accreditation of private clinics, implementation of tele-medicine and improvement of home care. The parties envisioned a health system mostly supported by the fiscal system, with minimal contribution from the patients. They also pledged to reduce the waiting times for a specialist visit or for emergency care in public hospitals.[56]

Public water[edit]

The parties intend to implement the will of the Italian people who reaffirmed in a 2011 referendum the public nature of water. The parties pledged to guarantee the quality of public water in all the municipalities by improving the water transport network, minimizing the leaks and replacing old pipelines that may still contain asbestos and lead.[56]

Agriculture, fishing and Made in Italy[edit]

The coalition intends to promote a reform of the Common Agricultural Policy of the European Union in a way that supports the Italian agriculture, but at the same time protects landscape and water resources and guarantees food safety. Small-scale agriculture and fishing should also be protected and the typical and traditional local productions should be safeguarded. Furthermore, the parties intend to promote the national productions within the trading treaties between the European Union and other countries and to protect the Made in Italy brand through proper labeling.[56]

Environment, green economy and circular economy[edit]

The parties pledged to increase the awareness around environmental issues and enforce measures of prevention and maintenance of the environment in order to mitigate the risk related to landslides, hydrogeology and floods. They also plan to devote special attention to the issues raised by climate change and pollution. They intend to promote a green economy and support research, innovation and training for ecology-related employment to increase the competitiveness and sustainability of the industry and reduce the dependence on fossil fuels. They also intend to promote a circular economy for a sustainable waste management based on enhanced recycling and regeneration. Finally, the parties plan to arrest land consumption through strategies of urban renewal, retrofit of private and public buildings and infrastructure, with increase of energy efficiency and the promotion of distributed energy generation.[56]

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External links[edit]